Tuesday 25 October 2016

Pushing diamonds off the red carpet

Published 17/11/2015 | 07:00

Models Paloma Feijoo and Alicia Kavanagh model jewellery from LA-based designer and entrepreneur Melinda Maria
Models Paloma Feijoo and Alicia Kavanagh model jewellery from LA-based designer and entrepreneur Melinda Maria
Melinda Maria

Meet LA jewellery designer Melinda Maria, who has taken the celebrity red carpet by storm.

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Her designs are inspiring the stars to park the usual premiere-dressing rules, like actress Elizabeth Banks who wore a flaming orange Versace designer gown costing thousands of dollars to the premiere of 'The Hunger Games' in LA.

However, instead of the usual posh designer jewellery which stars normally wear, flanked by security guards, Elizabeth put on a pair of $98 match stick earrings from Melinda's latest collection.

"The reaction when Elizabeth appeared on the red carpet with my earrings was just unbelievable, I couldn't believe it," said the blonde jewellery designer who hosted a breakfast in Dublin yesterday to mark the debut of her range at Arnotts in Henry Street.

"Elizabeth's choice triggered a huge reaction like the time Julia Roberts went on the last season of the 'Oprah' show and said that my jewellery was one of her favourite things. I couldn't believe that of all the expensive jewellery brands she could have named, Julia chose mine," said Melinda, whose jewellery is worn by all the Jennifers in Hollywood, from Lawrence to Hudson and Aniston. She is a busy mum to three sons aged five, four and one year.

She was travelling in Europe with her husband, Art Spigel, a film producer and director of children's TV shows in Los Angeles, and the couple were in Paris on Friday night when the terrorists struck. After catching an early flight to Ireland, Melinda had extra time to meet customers and breakfasted with stylist Ingrid Hoey, who is Irish brand ambassador for the range, and styled-up models for the breakfast showcase at the Dean Hotel.

"I was delighted to launch my collection here. I can see Irish fashion is strong and Irish women dress impeccably using accessories in a very fashion-forward way to accentuate their outfit choices," said Melinda.

"I used to be all about big earrings but my aesthetic has changed since I became a mum and now I'm all about studs and ear cuffs," she added.

Irish Independent

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